"We don't need a game about dividing players between winners and losers, but about creating connections at a different level. My current project, Death Stranding, aims to fulfill this goal."
- Game dev veteran Hideo Kojima, writing for Glixel about his current philosophy of game design.
This week Glixel published an article from the veteran game dev that sheds some light on his approach to making games through the lens of films like Dunkirk and The Great Escape. Kojima celebrates them for being "war movies without conflict", and he claims the past three decades of his working life have been in service of making games in a similar vein.
"Dunkirk's success lies in its convincing portrayal of being inside a war zone, and trying to 'escape,' or in other words, 'survive.' This is certainly an extreme outlier in the war movie genre," writes Kojima. "So, is it possible to tell a similar story using the interactive medium of video games? My 30-year struggle to answer this question has been Metal Gear."
Looking ahead, he says he's now more interested in making games that foster connections between players; citing a short story by Japanese author Kobo Abe, Kojima says he wants to change the game industry's focus on conflict.
"Fifty-five years have passed since the creation of the early video game Spacewar!, but video games are still primarily players with sticks fighting each other. They cannot break the curse of using sticks to keep evil away, or defeating enemies. I want to change this," he writes.
"We are ready for a game not based on competition, but on the rope that will bring good to the player and make connections. We don't need a game about dividing players between winners and losers, but about creating connections at a different level. My current project, Death Stranding, aims to fulfill this goal."
How that plays out remains to be seen. Death Stranding is of course the flagship project of the reformed Kojima Productions, and it's being built on Guerrilla Games' Decima Engine with no public release date.
For more of Kojima's musings on Metal Gear, player motivation, and movies, check out the full feature over on Glixel.